Zambia’s Tapioca Starch Trade: Exploring Export and Import Dynamics

Zambia’s participation in the global tapioca starch trade demonstrates its growing significance as both an exporter and importer. With notable export performance and a reliance on imports to meet domestic demand, the country showcases its potential for growth in the tapioca starch industry.


Zambia made significant strides in the tapioca starch trade in 2021, with exports totaling $140k. This achievement secured the country’s position as the 37th largest exporter of tapioca starch globally. Although tapioca starch ranked as the 531st most exported product from Zambia in the same year, its export figures underscore Zambia’s growing presence in the international market.

The primary destinations for Zambia’s tapioca starch exports included Mozambique ($102k), the United States ($34.4k), and the Democratic Republic of the Congo ($3.44k). These countries played a crucial role in driving Zambia’s export growth and expanding the reach of its tapioca starch products.

Between 2020 and 2021, Zambia experienced remarkable growth in its export markets for tapioca starch. Mozambique saw a substantial increase of $102k, highlighting the growing demand for Zambian tapioca starch in the neighboring country. The Democratic Republic of the Congo contributed an additional $3.44k, further emphasizing the expanding opportunities for Zambian exports.

ContinentCountryTrade Value
AfricaDemocratic Republic of the Congo3,437
North AmericaUnited States34,353
Table: Where Does Zambia Export Its Tapioca Starch (2021)


Zambia’s tapioca starch imports in 2021 amounted to $20.4k, positioning the country as the 109th largest importer of tapioca starch globally. Although tapioca starch ranked as the 2949th most imported product in Zambia during the same year, the import data underscores Zambia’s reliance on foreign sources to meet its domestic demand.

Vietnam emerged as the leading supplier of tapioca starch to Zambia, with imports totaling $13.3k. South Africa followed closely behind with $6.03k, while India contributed $786, and Tanzania supplied $255 worth of the product. These countries played a significant role in fulfilling Zambia’s growing demand for tapioca starch.

Between 2020 and 2021, Zambia experienced notable growth in its import markets for tapioca starch. Notably, Vietnam witnessed a substantial surge of $12.6k, reinforcing its position as a key tapioca starch supplier to Zambia. South Africa contributed an additional $4.29k, while India provided $786, further indicating the country’s expanding import requirements.

ContinentCountryTrade Value
AfricaSouth Africa6,032
Table: Where Does Zambia Import Its Tapioca Starch (2021)

Importing Tapioca Starch from Vietnam: A Reliable Partnership

Vietnam has emerged as a prominent supplier of tapioca starch to the Zambia market. In 2021, the total value of tapioca starch imports from Vietnam amounted to an impressive $13,307. This significant figure indicates that Vietnam’s tapioca starch holds a strong position in the market and is poised to maintain its presence in Zambia in the years to come. The reasons behind this sustained importation are primarily attributed to the product’s superior quality and competitive pricing.

Zambia benefits from Vietnam’s tapioca starch exports, which provide a dependable supply of this vital ingredient. The substantial import value from Vietnam underscores Zambia’s confidence in Vietnam as a trusted and preferred partner for fulfilling its tapioca starch requirements. With its consistent quality and competitive pricing, Vietnam’s tapioca starch has proven to be a reliable source that meets Zambia’s demand for this essential product.


In 2018, Zambia faced an average tariff rate of 13.6% on tapioca starch imports. Notably, several countries imposed higher import tariffs on this product, including Benin, Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, Cote d’Ivoire, and Cameroon. These nations maintained a Most Favored Nation duty rate treatment, resulting in a 15% tariff on tapioca starch imports into Zambia.

The presence of higher import tariffs in these countries presents trade barriers and cost implications for Zambia’s tapioca starch imports. Policymakers and stakeholders need to consider these tariffs when formulating import strategies and engaging in trade negotiations to ensure a balanced and sustainable market for tapioca starch in Zambia.

Source: BACI and General Statistics Office of Vietnam